Random Curiosity

« Usagi Drop – 09

Usagi Drop – 10, 11 (END)

Episode 10

Usagi Drop   10   01 Usagi Drop   10   02 Usagi Drop   10   03
Usagi Drop   10   04 Usagi Drop   10   05 Usagi Drop   10   06
Usagi Drop   10   07 Usagi Drop   10   08 Usagi Drop   10   09
Usagi Drop   10   10 Usagi Drop   10   11 Usagi Drop   10   12
Usagi Drop   10   13 Usagi Drop   10   14 Usagi Drop   10   15

「おなかのかぜ」 (Onaka no Kaze)
“Stomach Flu”

Impressions below.

 

Episode 11

Usagi Drop   11   01 Usagi Drop   11   02 Usagi Drop   11   03
Usagi Drop   11   04 Usagi Drop   11   05 Usagi Drop   11   06
Usagi Drop   11   07 Usagi Drop   11   08 Usagi Drop   11   09
Usagi Drop   11   10 Usagi Drop   11   11 Usagi Drop   11   12
Usagi Drop   11   13 Usagi Drop   11   14 Usagi Drop   11   15
Usagi Drop   11   16 Usagi Drop   11   17 Usagi Drop   11   18
Usagi Drop   11   19 Usagi Drop   11   20 Usagi Drop   11   21
Usagi Drop   11   22 Usagi Drop   11   23 Usagi Drop   11   24
Usagi Drop   11   25 Usagi Drop   11   26 Usagi Drop   11   27

「はじめの一歩」 (Hajime no Ippo)
“The First Step”

Daikichi runs into Rin’s classmates’ parents at the cultural festival and they quickly hit it up and become friends. Yet again, he gets to see and experience all sorts of joys and pains of parenthood; they are mundane, everyday aspects of life, but as always they manage to bring a smile to my face. Quite a bit does happen if you play close attention, though everything is pretty subtle. Bigger issues include juggling work and family, dealing with naughty little boys, and worrying over sick kids. All the quirks of growing up, like losing baby teeth, are very nostalgic as well. I didn’t know there was a custom of throwing baby teeth onto the roof, but where I grew up kids also saved their teeth in little containers (either that, or putting it under the pillow for the tooth fairy in exchange for a quarter).

There’s n remarkable mix of kids’ and adults’ issues, and the relatable and realistic family themes are hard not to enjoy. Even though a lot of us may not be parents yet, there’s no doubt we’ve experienced many of these things firsthand while growing up. After watching this episode for example, I can see how my mom and dad must have felt when I was very sick, or what they felt when I was acting like a brat. I cheered a little when Rin finally got better too: I’m not sure if other people feel the same, but the morning you wake up after an illness goes away is one of the best feelings in the world. They visit Daikichi’s parents again too, and Daikichi’s mom fussing over Rin made me laugh out loud quite a bit, as it totally reminded me of how my grandma was with me.

Finally there’s the relationship potential with Kouki’s mom as well, and they do seem to be getting closer, especially because of their similar issues as a single parent. After Rin’s cold, she gets sick as well; Daikichi and Rin send over a care package, and I could definitely see the chemistry between him and Yukari in that scene. More and more they feel like a family, and I wouldn’t mind if they really did become one. Unfortunately the adaption ends before that can be delved into, but I guess romance doesn’t play a significant part in the story yet.

There’s a short recap at the end of the last episode, and through the flashbacks it’s clear that Daikichi and Rin have definitely changed and grown a whole lot in the past year. I didn’t notice it while following the show each week, but a quick comparison shows how much things have progressed since that moment a 31-year-old bachelor suddenly decided to take in his 6-year-old aunt, the illegitimate child of his grandfather. Rin of course has grown both physically and emotionally, but Daikichi has matured in his own way as well; this is evident as he talks with Kazumi, who facing the parenthood issue already and does not know if she is ready to put out the sacrifice required to raise a kid — a sacrifice that Daikichi is just beginning to understand well. His family is very unique and in some ways was more difficult than a traditional family, but he has put out much effort to learn the skills of being a parent, and I do believe it has paid off.

 

Usagi Drop   11   28 Usagi Drop   11   29 Usagi Drop   11   30

Final Impressions:
After finally getting around to watching the final two episodes, I am no less impressed. With the same mood and atmosphere that has prevailed throughout the last three months, Bunny Drop ends on a quiet, sentimental note, with no sign of the much mentioned “controversial” time-skip and ending. While I have not spoiled myself with the manga yet, perhaps it is time to check it out myself sometime (on Takaii’s recommendation). Here however, I will judge the anime on its own, and there is certainly little flaw with this adaption.

The eleven episodes span a course of a year from the time Daikichi meets Rin at his father’s funeral to when Rin loses her second baby tooth. In many ways it reminds me of Hourou Musuko; the quiet BGM and the watercolor-like art style featured in both fit in well with the laid-back pace, and I’d go another step to say that the music and the art actually enhanced the atmosphere of the series. Even though the two shows have drastically different subject material, I would definitely consider Usagi Drop another example of “slice-of-life done right”.

Keeping in line with its genre, it’s definitely a slow-paced series though, and is fairly uneventful throughout (unless you consider elementary school entrance ceremonies, rice balls or jump rope contests “exciting”). As such, this series tends not to generate a lot of buzz, and is also rather difficult to blog about each week. That’s not to say it was boring however, as I highly enjoyed seeing a family issues being delved into, as the premise is fairly unique in contrast to the usual high school setting with absent parents. The single best adjective to describe Usagi Drop is “heartwarming” as episode after episode manages to bring warm and fuzzy feelings to your heart. Plus, Daikichi and Rin are no ordinary family either, and their interactions are just adorable.

The rest of the cast was great as well, but because of the length of the series, a lot of their stories are left hanging (e.g. Masako, Yukari, or Gotou). They were minor, but their relationship and connection with Daikichi and Rin perked my interest in their characters. Though the anime concluded rather abruptly, it really just boiled down to chronological snapshots into the characters’ lives, and for that it was a fun ride. Throw in a little bit of humor and some occasional drama, and you have a very solid series. I’m definitely planning to read the rest of the story, and am looking forward to a chance to watch the live action movie as well.

September 21, 2011 at 5:25 am
39 comments »
  • September 21, 2011 at 5:33 amTJsama

    You know what, I am really hoping that Production I.G. makes a sequel NOT following that so-called “controversial” time skip thing and make an original story continuing this one. Or perhaps they’d just fill in the time skip. That’ll pique my interest.

    • September 21, 2011 at 3:33 pmHrmmm

      I wouldn’t mind a non-canon OVA just to display Yukari and Daikichi with each other going out sometime xD

      And… they really shouldn’t continue Usagi Drop – don’t ruin something that’s nearly perfect. Here’s to hoping that the greedy people up top don’t try to dig for more gold with this series and leave it the same way that Cowboy Bebop just left us hanging.

  • September 21, 2011 at 5:42 amTheta

    This series surely has been one of the highlights of the season, and definitely of all shows I’ve seen. Never has it failed to disappoint, and whatever controversial endings it has, I’m glad it’s been kept out, because the note that this show ended on should be not be changed.
    Not once will this show fail to bring a smile to your face, and help you to appreciate the important things in life, from relationships with loved ones to the small, yet significant events that can change one’s life forever. I guess for Daikichi, big things came in small packages.

  • September 21, 2011 at 5:44 amKalliente

    I continue to be suprised at the amount of negative feelings towards the last half of the manga. These things “do” happen in real life.

    • September 21, 2011 at 5:51 amMieu

      Yeah. This won’t be popular, but I thought they handled it well myself.

      That said Show Spoiler ▼

      .

    • September 21, 2011 at 6:06 amdeafvader

      you know where the anime ends in the manga? which chapter should i start from?

      • September 21, 2011 at 7:55 amMieu

        The anime ends with Chapter 24. If you want to read on though, heads up that Show Spoiler ▼

        .

    • September 22, 2011 at 5:59 pmHostile

      The way they handled it was a joke. There’s no hinting towards that possibility until the manga-ka decided to crap all over her work and bring it up out of nowhere. I don’t particularly like manga that end that way in the first place but it wasn’t well-thought out or executed well at all.

      I quite enjoyed the series until then but I didn’t even want to bother with the anime after I finished the manga.

  • September 21, 2011 at 6:16 am1Lau

    Sadly it ended so soon.
    I would watch 100 episodes of this. Just like Nodame.

  • September 21, 2011 at 6:17 amGP007

    I get why people probably don’t like the 2nd half of the story, the drama gets tossed in to some crazy highs, but that’s life. Also, if anything, the ending wasn’t much of a surprise, hell even the early parts in the anime show hints in a sense.

    Show Spoiler ▼

    • September 21, 2011 at 7:42 ambga

      Definitively what you you said about the final on the manga it’s true.
      Show Spoiler ▼

      As for the anime much like Proof said this is slice-of-life done right not much action or mystery right, but what happens is great for just happening in the daily life and making the two grow.

      Good anime, good ending and great realization overall.

  • September 21, 2011 at 7:44 amDude

    If they make another one of these I seriously hope they don’t follow the manga. I hated the way the story ended in the manga.

  • September 21, 2011 at 8:24 amsaika

    The second half of the manga is what makes Usagi Drop the brilliant series that it is, otherwise it’s just a good but ultimately forgettable read. People need to get over themselves and stop calling it “controversial” when it’s just a matter of prejudice/your own personal issues. The author is allowed to tell this story and not the one you wanted, plus it’s treated tastefully, realistically and it’s hinted throughout the first half and beyond.

    So, really, open your minds a bit and get over it.

    • September 21, 2011 at 10:31 amPerson

      Maybe its not as controversial as people make it out to be but I have to disagree on it being tone tastefully, realistically and the hints a kind of weak. Show Spoiler ▼

  • September 21, 2011 at 8:29 amT.K.

    I guess it’s time I pick up on the manga and see what the “controversy” is all about.

    • September 21, 2011 at 10:03 amBijyu

      There is no controversy, it is a loving happy ending.

  • September 21, 2011 at 10:09 amZnail

    A second season would most likely follow the manga as it has done it so far and the “controversy” isn’t much of one in Japan.
    Show Spoiler ▼

    I wouldn’t really consider a spoiler that this episode followed the last chapter of the manga before the time skip. I think that will be very clear if they make a second season following the manga anyway just from the preview info and illustrations, not to mention any animated preview.

    • September 21, 2011 at 10:38 amPerson

      Show Spoiler ▼

  • September 21, 2011 at 10:47 amKinny Riddle

    For a while I thought RC has quietly dropped coverage of this.

    Anyway, I guess it was good that this first season doesn’t cover events after the much debated time-skip (which I’ve avoided spoilers but can much as guess what’s gonna happen), so as to leave viewers with a good impression of Rin’s first year with Daikichi and get them prepared for the second season.

  • September 21, 2011 at 1:32 pmBoo

    About the manga ending. It’s not that “it happens in real life” (then sci-fi stories would be all shit), but how the mangaka changed the peace and the flow of the story on that second half – it turned into a generic manga with a whattheshit ending. If you read that you wouldn’t know it was the same manga (not counting the characters, obviously). Yes when I read the ending, I raged.

  • September 21, 2011 at 1:51 pmKou

    There really needs to be more shows like this out there. I very much enjoy this warm fuzzy feeling I get after every episode. Having read the manga before the start of the series I knew what I was in for but it is such a heart warming story that I really didn’t mind watching it even though it followed the manga fairly closely. I suspect if there were to be a second season it too would stick close to the source material but I would like to see a bit more those missing years filled in. This along with Natsume Yuujinchou, Nichijou, Hanasaku iroha and Ikoku Meiro no Croisée are my favourite shows of the season.

  • September 21, 2011 at 3:02 pmAK-47

    What else to say than best series this season, no stupid big boob highschool girls around a mentaly chalanged boy, no robots fighting robots and no “you have female genitalia therefore you are special enough to kick a poor guy just because he doesnt understand your stupidity”… well you probably know what i mean anime industry today…

  • September 21, 2011 at 3:25 pmMimS

    This is what slice of life is supposed to be.

  • September 21, 2011 at 3:32 pmmac65

    This series is really a character study of Rin, whose personality was pretty much set
    long before she met Daikichi.

    It amazes me that people aren’t able to see those developments in these first episodes -
    I’m not talking about a romantic development. You need to watch carefully everything
    Rin does, though it’s subtle, the episode about their trees really shows what the author
    is trying convey about Rin.

    I had wondered how the roots of relationships like this are grown – this series provides
    a plausible, sweet insight to this possibility. Where some authors might just throw the
    relationship at their readers with a pulled-out-of-my-butt explanation, here we’re given
    a unique opportunity to see how the tiny seed grows.

    In a way, this is more of a Cinderella story; every living girl wants this but few know
    how to achieve. For our fictional Rin, her knight happens to be the man that raised her
    and she learns to achieves what she wants for her life.

    This is, of course, my humble (probably overly romantic) opinion…

  • September 21, 2011 at 4:22 pmTomer

    Oh man, can’t believe I just read to the end of the manga. Totally ruined it for me..

    • September 21, 2011 at 11:18 pmkabayongtao

      Just like how Golum said when Sam was cooking a rabbit stew with potatoes.

  • September 21, 2011 at 4:31 pmBROOKLYN otaku

    are you serious!? that’s how it ended????….HAHAHA, i couldn’t even tell!!

  • September 21, 2011 at 4:57 pmKentaiyoshimi

    One of the main reason I even started reading Usagi Drop was because the premise of a 31 year old bachelor taking care of his 6 years old aunt is very intriguing and uncommon.

    However,
    Show Spoiler ▼

    That said, the first half of the manga (and the anime adaptation) was truly a delight to read/watch. It definitely give the audience a unique feeling that most anime can’t achieve.

  • September 21, 2011 at 8:44 pmkarnos

    from what i understood growing up the belief was to throw your bottom teeth upwards and to drop your upper teeth towards the ground, the idea is that this will make your teeth grow out straight….. at least that was what my mother and grand mother told me.

  • September 21, 2011 at 8:59 pmFuuka

    Even in the Japanese movie version they changed the ending. The reason Usagi Drop was/is so popular is because at it’s core it is an adorable and easy to relate to story. It is also a story that probably could exist somewhere in real life, ya know? I started reading Usagi Drop since it’s beginning years ago. The ending I was not a fan of, but the manga as a whole makes up for it.

  • September 21, 2011 at 10:13 pmRicalloo

    This show just makes you feel good inside. Maybe this is some sort of campaign in Japan because the birth rates are dangerously low. No one will be there to help the retiring old people in the future.

    That said, I am getting older and I doubt I will ever have kids. I may be finding myself regretting that.

  • September 21, 2011 at 11:16 pmkabayongtao

    After watching this last episode, I read the manga from top to bottom. It took me a whole day. :D

  • September 22, 2011 at 12:36 amLectro Volpi

    I started Usagi Drop with not much hype, just with a mentality of ” My Hipster weird art anime you don’t understand cuz you watch too much Shonen U ignorant” people tend to have. I stand corrected.

    Usagi Drop is one of a kind. I was there every Thursday ready for it, just once I let 2 episodes pile up and nevermore *awk* *awk*

    Rin is a cute character, but a cute likeable character, her grace is not just smacking moe in your face hoping to kill you with diabetes. She is smart, mature and responsible.

    The cast remained grounded true to slice of life. Rin was mature but not a Mary sue (afraid of death and bad at hiding her bedwetting) nor it was Daikichi (when he panicked over Rin’s illness in EP 10).

    BGM was quiet but I remember it. Amazing OP and Ed, never skipped them.

    Consistent art, I don’t remember any flaws.

    Rewatch value is not for me the strongest point but for sure it has more than Ikoku for me.

    I am glad they let it just here. The second part of the story is like another manga.

    I want to give it a Tenten but I will stick to a well deserved:

    9/10 and my best pick this season.

  • September 22, 2011 at 2:41 amgrace

    this anime was incredibly sweet. as for the manga…eh..parts of it were definitely superb. i always saw the relationship between daikichi and rin as father and daughter–how paternal bonds can be formed even when someone isn’t your own child–so the ending was kind of conceptually dissonant. (after all, there is such a thing as the westermarck phenomenon, although this effect seems to be blatantly ignored by so many recent japanese manga.)

    i gotta say i’m happy this ended where it did. everything was left cute and sweet without any potentially dissonant overtones. 9/10 for me. :)

    • September 22, 2011 at 10:40 amZnail

      Westermark phenomenon is set the first 6 years of your life.
      Show Spoiler ▼

    • September 22, 2011 at 6:30 pmkabayongtao

      That is indeed, an interesting concept.

  • September 23, 2011 at 1:29 pmLunafloon

    I just finished the manga, and
    Show Spoiler ▼

    As for the anime, it was beautiful and I will honestly miss it. I personally doubt a second season, whether it be manga based or original, but if they make one I will definitely watch!

  • September 24, 2011 at 5:56 amarknoir

    Manga and anime panders to its readers. Jc Staff don’t churn out those generic loli chara anime fo rthe sake of it. This manga endings is an example.

  • September 24, 2011 at 1:10 pmYomu

    Maybe it will end here and they won’t even animate the time skip~! That would be good!